Heard It Through the Grapevine

Posted by Rob Mahoney on October 15, 2010 under xOther | Be the First to Comment

  • Art Garcia previews the Mavs’ season for NBA.com, with some help from Jason Kidd: “Surveying the roster, Kidd points to the two candidates the Mavericks need to come through if that’s going to happen. ‘Shawn and Caron are the two guys that I would circle,’ he said. ‘We need them to have big years.’ Getting that out of them is a function of both understanding the system and each other. Shawn Marion is just one year into his Dallas career. Caron Butler arrived in February. The two former All-Stars are still transitioning to Carlisle’s system. There’s been a lot said and written about which of the two will start this season, since both are natural small forwards. They started together last season, with Butler sharing backcourt space next to Kidd. The starting point guard dismissed any notion that playing time or starting status is going to be an issue. ‘They’re going to be on the court together,’ Kidd assured. ‘It just goes back to being comfortable. When you’re comfortable and understand each other’s tendencies, the game becomes that much easier.’”
  • For those of  you who are fantasy basketball-inclined, Tom Carpenter pegged Rodrigue Beaubois as a legitimate breakout candidate.
  • Another quality quote from Art Garcia’s preview, this time courtesy of Rick Carlisle, who accurately appraises the Mavs’ current value (emphasis mine): “We know we have a good team here. And what we want to be is a special team. For that to happen, we’ve got some improvement to make in some specific areas.”
  • Courtesy of Tom Haberstroh: skew the stats just right (read: on a per-minute basis), and Ian Mahinmi is an all-timer.
  • Chris Tomasson of NBA FanHouse on the Maverick bigs: “Nowitzki’s centers have included stationary objects Shawn Bradley, Raef LaFrentz, DeSagana Diop and Dampier. General manager Donnie Nelson said the Mavericks have had “your traditional aircraft carrieresque centers,” but not the agility and versatility they have in the pivot now with Chandler and Haywood. ‘We’re just going to keep bringing bigs and don’t have to worry about foul trouble,’ said Cuban, who also has in his stable two more centers in 6-11 Ian Mahinmi and 7-foot Alex Ajinca. ‘We can be aggressive, we can press and run and we can do a lot of things we couldn’t do before. It helps us match up against anybody, the Lakers in particular. If they’ve got Bynum, Gasol and Odom on the floor, we can match up. We don’t have to worry about one of those guys posting us up…We’ve got depth and we can put a lot of pressure on teams and hopefully wear them down over the course of a game.’”
  • Dirk doesn’t think he’s “big-time” enough to throw out the first pitch at a Rangers’ playoff game.
  • Dominique Jones, who is wise beyond his years (via Tim MacMahon of ESPN Dallas): “If you looked at me my whole career, when have I ever missed layups? We’re talking about layups. We aren’t talking about my jump shot or 3s. We’re talking about layups. I’m missing layups. If I keep going in there, something good is going to happen…I can’t be a rookie this year. I’ve never been a freshman, and I can’t play like a rookie, can’t look like one.”
  • Apparently, when Jason Terry signs each tweet with “CTC,” he does mean “cut the check.” Only he doesn’t. But he still really does. Alright.
  • Dominique Jones and the Dallas Cowboys’ Dez Bryant have had very different rookie experiences.

A few older links, from yet another unpublished edition of the Grapevine:

  • It was once supposed that the Mavs might be able to flip some combination of expiring contracts (Tyson Chandler, Caron Butler, etc.) for an impact player mid-season, but Ryan Schwan of Hornets 24-7 made an excellent point to the contrary: the oversaturation of large expiring contracts on this year’s trade market will make the trade value of all such contracts decline, and the likelihood of any given team (in the case of his piece, the Hornets, and for our purposes, the Mavs) drop accordingly.
  • According to Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News, “the Mavericks are fortunate to have a superstar who loves his surroundings and is willing to help make it work in Dallas.” I’d agree, but they’re just as lucky that Dirk Nowitzki never received a certain phone call.
  • Per Art Garcia of NBA.com: “Byron Scott said Tyson Chandler is best & smartest center he’s ever coached.”
  • The preseason matters more than we think, which probably isn’t what Mavs fans want to hear after going 1-3 on their preseason run thus far.
  • Brendan Haywood as a selection on Kevin Sawyer’s All-Overrated team at Detroit Bad Boys. I couldn’t disagree more. Haywood’s good for a quasi double-double, and the real deal when he gets proper minutes. He’s a smart help-side defender and skilled in defending the low post. Considering how much a premium is placed on those skills, I fail to see how Haywood falls so miserably short, even if we use his price tag against him. Overpaid maybe, but necessarily so. Throw in solid finishing ability, a decent righty hook, and par-for-the-course rebounding, and you’ve got yourself a hell of a player that shouldn’t even sniff this list. (Link via Ball Don’t Lie)
  • Udonis Haslem quietly killed the Mavs in the 2006 Finals, and the nearly came to terms with Dallas for the mid-level exception. What’s he doing these days? Oh, not much, just being a damn essential part of the vaunted Miami Heat.